Israel will legalize 80% of Judea and Samaria towns in limbo

Avichai Mandelblit will legalize 80 percent of those Judea and Samaria towns whose legal status is in question.

By World Israel News Staff

Israel’s Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit will inform the Supreme Court on Sunday that 80 percent of the land in Judea and Samaria on which Jewish towns are built but whose legal status is in question can be legalized, Israel’s Ynet website reports. The decision will affect some 2,000 structures.

The attorney general settled on a formula to approve the legalization of these buildings caught in legal limbo without the need for the “Regulation Law.”

Instead, Mandelblit found a way around the law, which is steeped in controversy, and will rely on the “Market ouvert” clause, also known as Article 5.

Article 5 states that, “A transaction made in good faith between the Custodian of Government Property in the Territories and any other person in any property which the Custodian thought at the time of the transaction to be government property shall be valid even if in practice the land in question did not belong to the State.”

“The attorney general’s decision comes as good news for settlement,” Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said, according to Ynet. “Years of stagnation, uncertainty and the threat of demolition have come to an end. We have changed the discourse from one of evacuation to one of regularization and construction. This is an appropriate Zionist response to the cruel murders of recent days. ”

The decision came after three years of legal review in consultation with Justice Minister Shaked, Ynet reports.

Mandelblit’s Senior Adviser Attorney Gil Limon, wrote in the opinion: “The implementation of Article 5 constitutes a significant component of the policy of the Israeli government to normalize illegal construction in Judea and Samaria which was established in good faith and with the involvement of the state authorities.

“Therefore, there is room for the relevant government ministries to take proactive action to advance the steps necessary to implement the article. This initiated action should include an appropriate working plan and the allocation of the required resources,” Limon wrote.

The government came under pressure to take action following a string of terror attacks in recent weeks. One of the actions called for was the normalization of the legal status of Jewish towns in Judea and Samaria.